"Boom, Swing Left"

R. A. Lindsey's series of three color photographs show a yellow construction boom swinging over a building site in downtown Seattle.

About the Artwork

Artist / Title / Date

R. A. Lindsey / Boom, Swing Left / 1989

About the Piece

The piece was acquired from the 1989 Renton Annual Art Show. These photographs were taken at the Arbor Place site in downtown Seattle in 1989. To create the illusion that the boom is moving, Lindsey took three photos of the same boom from three different angles: left, straight ahead, and right. The cloudy greys of the Seattle sky contrast with the sea of colors and patterns in the bustling city below.

Buildings are perpetually dying and being born, though their lifespans are usually longer than our own. Stone cathedrals have given way to the bricks and steel of modern construction, hallmarks of the big city captured here in Lindsey's photos. Ruins hint at the past glory of those who came before us, while construction sites herald progress and forward movement. Buildings have come to define human settlements around the world. Would Seattle be the same without the Space Needle? And would the Space Needle be the same in another city?

About the Artist

Artist Rod Lindsey is a jack-of-all-trades: he writes, he paints, he take photos, and he builds. He spent more than 30 years in commercial, highway, and bridge construction before a 15-year career in freelance photojournalism and sales. He earned his nickname of "Beamwalker" by fearlessly walking up on high beams on construction sites. A statement by the artist reads: "An artist, Rod Lindsey looks at the calluses on his hands with a certain detached resentment. And he keeps walking up in the middle of a dreary pseudo-reality where he's a carpenter and works too damned hard to earn his wage, has a mortgage, votes, supports a family, etc. He writes to exorcise such demons."